Pastor Tony Romero
I'm born & raised in the city of Oceanside in San Diego County, California. At a young age I found myself frustrated in life with the problems & issues around my family. I got involved in drugs, alcohol & associated myself with tagging crews & gangs. As i ran to drugs to mask my frustrations I found myself getting into a deep pit. I began using marijuana & alcohol at 11 & started using crystal meth at 13 years old. I was never pressured by anyone but rather I chose this path of life willingly. As my use of drugs got wose I found myself selling various drugs to support my habit. I became a drug addict & drug dealer on the streets & I began to get deeper involved in the dark work of crime & street life. I lost many family members & good friends to gang violence, prison & drug overdoses. I began to feel that death was creeping up to my door.
Eventually I found myself in & out of the court system & one day being arrested facing 5 years in prison for multiple counts of drug sales, possession, probation violation & intent to distribute drugs. This day came when I was at my lowest point in life & I had nowhere to go. I felt like I was in a deep well or hole & the only place I could look was up. I called out to God to give me a second chance at life & I asked Him, "God, If you are real and if you can change a persons life then I ask that you would take my life & turn it around!" That very day as I was sitting in police custody there was a "window of opportunity" for me to go to a drug & alcohol recovery home where I could change my life & find the support I needed. I was eventualy released to the Victory Outreach Recovery Home in Escondido, California where I surrendered my life to Christ & never looked back. It has been over 16 years since I've used any drugs or substances. God delivered me & set me free! Well, today I am the senior pastor & Executive director of the very same Recovery Home I entered but here in Auckland, New Zealand!